2013 CTSI Annual Pilot Awards to Improve the Conduct of Research

To facilitate the development, conduct or analysis of clinical & translational research

About 2013 CTSI Annual Pilot Awards


CTSI invites the UCSF Campus Community and CTSI Affiliate Organizations to submit your best ideas for improving the design, conduct, or analysis of translational research. Pilot awards are expected to range from in-kind support from CTSI programs to $50K each; total funding values to be disbursed in this cycle have not yet been determined. We will use UCSF Open Proposals for submissions, allowing for collaboration and improvement of proposals prior to a final review deadline.

Projects might suggest improvements to infrastructure, new services to enable researchers, pragmatic studies that clarify competitive benchmarks for key research processes, etc. Projects should NOT substitute for core infrastructure for the campus, or simply extend an existing research project that doesn't fit the criteria for generalizability and scalability described below.

Fundable ideas will:

  1. Identify and address a clear challenge in the conduct of clinical and translational research.
  2. Describe
    • An innovative assessment project that clarifies the source of the problem and suggests the best route to address, OR
    • The implementation of a pilot project, the success or failure of which determines the best route to next steps.
  3. Explain how the project establishes a generalizable, scalable and sustainable model that improves the conduct of research.
  4. Be 'shovel-ready' — has appropriately experienced resources in place or planned that allow the project to be conducted efficiently.

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  • Anyone from the UCSF community, faculty, or staff who can demonstrate directly or through established collaborations that they are able to successfully complete the project.
  • Investigators from CTSI Affiliates:
    • Kaiser Permanente Division of Research (KP DOR)
    • Kaiser Foundation Research Institute
    • Children's Hospital of Oakland Research Institute (CHORI)
    • San Francisco Department of Public Health (SFDPH)
    • J. David Gladstone Institutes
    • Ernest Gallo Clinic and Research Center (Gallo Center)
    • California Institute for Quantitative Biosciences (QB3)
    • Blood Systems Research Institute (BSRI)
    • Jewish Home of San Francisco
    • San Francisco Veterans Affairs Medical Center

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Review Criteria

  1. Scope and priority of problem being addressed
  2. Extent of collaboration involved
  3. Generalizability of model
  4. Scalability and sustainability of model
  5. Talent and relevance of experience of team
  6. Ability to align project success metrics with CTSI's goals

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Proposal Format

Initial Protocol Review

  1. Submit a maximum, 1-page proposal that addresses:
    1. Rationale
    2. Plan
    3. Criteria and metrics for success
    4. Approximate cost and very brief justification ($50K max)
    5. Collaborators
  2. All submissions must be input through UCSF Open Proposals, which will allow others at UCSF to review your proposal, comment on it, and if appropriate reach out to you to join the team.
  3. For your proposal to be considered you must provide constructive feedback through an online comment at least once.

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Timeline and Open Proposal Process

Applications are posted online, where they are available for review by peers within the UCSF community, who are also invited to comment on the proposal. In response, the applicant may revise the proposal throughout the process. Commenters may note useful resources and might even join the proposal team. The process is intended to take advantage of expertise across the UCSF community, to promote collaborative work, and to reduce the likelihood of redundant proposals.

  • January 28 - February 26: Open Development Phase
    • Develop proposal offline and submit and/or
    • Propose idea online to look for collaborators
    • CTSI board members and program directors will continually review the Open Proposal site and make connections where possible.
    • Subscribe to email updates to view new proposals and comments
  • February 26, 5pm PST: Proposal Submission Deadline
  • February 27 – March 19: Open Improvement Phase
    • Browse proposals and comment to improve others proposals and/or
    • Comment to indicate interest to collaborate and expand someone else's proposal.
    • Review comments (including CTSI board members' comments provided by March 5th) on your own proposal and revise if necessary.
  • March 19: Updated Proposal Deadline
    • (Optional – your proposal could remain unchanged as well)
    • No edits to proposals allowed after this date
  • March 20 – April 29: Review Phase
    • Proposals will be reviewed
  • April 30: Awards Announced
  • July 1, 2013 – June 30, 2014: Implementation Phase
    • Award must be utilized during this time period.

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